DSDE Article Detail Page Finding Meaning, Application for the Much-Discussed Digital Twin

Matt Zborowski, Technology Writer


Among the many buzzy, digitally related words or terms bandied about the industry over the past year or two, “digital twin” serves as something of a confluence of them all. Populating many industry conference agendas are high-level presentations and discussions with descriptors such as digitization, digitalization, digital transformation, and the digital disruption, which involve big data, data analytics, advanced analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, automation, the Internet of Things (IoT), and the ever-important, abundantly abstract cloud. Some of those terms are used rather broadly and interchangeably, leading many to wonder: What exactly are we talking about here? The definition of a digital twin is similarly less finite, but it is rather easy to conceptualize at a basic level. The technology links the physical world with the digital world, providing a digital model of a physical asset or process. It serves as a real-time data hub for its owner, allowing for reference to designed or expected performance and continuous offsite monitoring.